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Timber Framing

Timbered Sawhorse Trestles: Women & Non-Binary Session

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Course Overview

Whether they are built for the workshop or used to support a tabletop or workbench, timbered sawhorse trestles are reliable, sturdy, and reflective of the craftsmanship that goes into timber framing. During this course, students will learn the layout and cutting of the mortise and tenon joints to create a pair of trestles made of 6”x 6" timbers that are 3 or 4 feet wide. This class is a great introduction to the basic techniques used in traditional timber framing. Students will have the opportunity to try out professional-grade timber framing tools, as well as learn to use a variety of traditional hand tools. The basic 6"x6" design of these timbered sawhorses are more than strong enough for almost any use. That said, students interested in even heavier duty sawhorses may request timbers that are 6"x8" (5' wide) or 8"x8" (6' wide) for an additional cost, approximately 1.5 times or 2 times respectively the materials fee. Please inquire at the time of registration.  By request, this session is open to students who identify as women or non-binary, as well as trans folks. An open enrollment session of this class will be offered in late 2024.

Required Tools

  • Tape measure
  • Carpenter's pencil
  • Eye protection (available for purchase @ North House School Store)

Optional Tools

  • 1-1/2” Framing Chisel. Barr makes a great framing chisel, and these are available for purchase at the School Store (see below). Woodcraft and Sorby both make a suitable chisel as well. The standard bench chisels available at the local hardware store are not long enough for this type of work. The school and the instructor both have chisels that you can borrow for the class.
  • Heavy duty carving mallet. Again, the school has mallets you may use or purchase, but if you want to get your own, look for a 20-40 oz mallet with a wood, rawhide, or plastic head. Urethane mallets are excellent.
  • Marking knife. Anything from a swiss army knife to carpet or utility knife will work. (May be available @ School Store)
  • Ear Protection (May be available for purchase @ North House School Store)
  • Combination Square
  • Framing square
  • 1/2” drill
  • Hand saw – Japanese pull saws are very useful

*The Barr Framing Chisel is beautifully hand-crafted and designed for superb performance.  Hand packed on the anvil, individually hardened and ground flat on the back, they will give you many hours of effortless cutting between sharpenings.  For your convenience, this 1 ½ inch chisel is now available in the North House School Store.

In addition, several recommended titles on Timber Framing are available in the School Store including: "The Timber-Frame Home" by Tedd Benson "Timberframe" by Tedd Benson "Build a Classic Timber-Framed House" by Jack A. Sobon "Timber Frame Construction: All About Post-and-Beam Building" by Jack Sobon and Roger Schroeder "Building the Timber Frame House: The Revival of a Forgotten Craft" by Tedd Benson with James Gruber

These books and tools may be available for purchase on your first day of class, or you may also call to reserve your copy @ 888-387-9762.


Thu, Jun 13th, 2024  –  Sat, Jun 15th, 2024

Course Details

Hours: Day 1: 1-5pm; Days 2-3: 9am-5pm
Tuition: $255.00
Materials fee: $165.00
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Meet the Instructor

North House Folk School photo of instructor, Martha Williams
Martha Williams

Meet the Instructor

North House Folk School photo of instructor, Alo Osberg
Alo Osberg

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Timbered Sawhorse Trestles: Women & Non-Binary Session